Xyleia specializes in petrified wood interior items. With always hundreds of pieces in stock in our spacious showroom, there is plenty to choose from. We import the petrified wood from Indonesia. We travel to Indonesia several times a year to select the most beautiful pieces.
We use the material for multiple applications. Are you looking for a unique and stylish coffee table, then a slab of petrified wood on one of our design bases is definitely something for you! If you prefer it even more robust, a side table made of petrified wood might be something you like. These are logs of petrified wood that are rough or polished on the side and where the annual rings are often beautifully visible on the top.
Another frequently chosen application is petrified wood as a wash basin. The robust raw side and the polished colorful top makes for a unique combination. As decoration, for example on our tree trunk tables, we also make special plates and bowls from petrified wood.
Almost our entire collection can be viewed online. If you have the opportunity, we definitely recommend you to view our collection in real life in our spacious 2500 m² showroom in Heeten near Deventer, in The Netherlands. We are happy to show you around and tell you more about the material and of more applications that are possible. Below you can navigate directly to our collection. Further on this page you will find answers to the most common questions about petrified wood.
Petrified wood (also called fossil wood) is a mineral that can occur because trees are buried under a thick layer of volcanic ash. The ash contains many minerals that dissolve in groundwater. The wood doesn’t rot as quickly as it normally would, because it doesn’t come in contact with oxygen. Groundwater saturates the tree, and the minerals penetrate the cells within the tree.
Slowly but surely the rotten wood is replaced by the minerals. This process takes many years, and the structure of the dead tree is perfectly preserved. The wood content is replaced completely by hard stone like minerals. Experts can recognize the species of tree.
The petrified wood from Indonesia consists almost exclusively of the species Dipterocarpus. This deciduous species still exists, and is common in the tropical rainforests of Southeast Asia. Petrified Palm trees are also found.
The trees from Arizona and Madagascar are Araucaria. There are also other petrified trees available.
The Indonesian petrified wood typically comes from the Miocene era. This means that the trees are about 20 million years old. There were no humans alive, and dinosaurs became extinct about 45 years ago, as a comparison. The petrified wood from Arizona and Madagascar is much older. Approximately 225 million years old.
Petrified wood can be found all over the world. In most countries, such as the Netherlands, it is not very interesting. The pieces are small and the colouration tends to be bland. In some countries, petrified wood can be found in large quantities, made up of large pieces which are brightly coloured. Top quality pieces are to be found in Indonesia, the USA, Madagascar and Brazil.
There are known “petrified forests”, where tourists can explore. It is strictly forbidden to remove petrified wood from these locations. Well known petrified forest are located on the island of Lesbos, in Greece, and in Arizona, USA.
Petrified wood in Indonesia is often hidden deep under ground. When a farmer is plowing his land, he can sometimes unearth a piece of petrified wood. Experts are then called in to examine the piece to determine if it is worth excavating. If they are found to be valuable, they are sold to companies who clean, cut and generally process the piece.. Xyleia Natural Interiors purchase the petrified wood from these companies.
The simple answer is yes it is. In Indonesia, petrified wood has become a cottage industry, enabling many people to earn their living by excavating petrified wood, transporting and processing it.
It is not particularly difficult to find petrified wood, but it is a challenge to locate beautiful pieces. Xyleia Natural Interiors purchase less than 1% of what our local buyers are offered. The other 99% doesn’t meet our criteria. Our local staff continuously travel in search of the best pieces.
The “Mohs” hardness scale, runs from 1 to 10. Chalk has a hardness of 1. A diamond is 10 on the scale. Petrified wood is an average of 7. Granite also is 7 on the scale. Belgian marble is 3, and limestone 4. Petrified wood is a less suitable material for sculptors, due to its hardness.
Using conventional grinders petrified wood can be cut, shaped and polished. When polished, wonderful colors emerge. It can be cut into slices. Larger pieces up to 3 meters in diameter, are cut using a wire saw. Cutting and polishing is a very time consuming task which requires craftsmanship.
The biggest piece of petrified wood that we ourselves have ever seen, weighed about 23 tons. The biggest piece in our collection in the Netherlands weighs approx 800 kg. That’s similar to a small car. The average weight of a side table is around 100 kg.
The petrified wood is well packed in strong timber crates, then placed into a shipping container. A full container weighs 20 tons. It takes about a month to arrive in Europe.